Bruins Ranked No. 4 in 2022 D1Softball Preseason Poll
LOS ANGELES – The UCLA softball program will begin the 2022 campaign at No. 4 in the D1Softball preseason Top 25 according to a Tuesday release by the organization. The USA Today / NFCA Division I Coaches Poll will be announced on Feb. 1.
Ahead of the Bruins are the defending national champion Oklahoma Sooners at No. 1, Alabama at No. 2 and Oklahoma State at No. 3. In order after UCLA, Florida, Florida State, Washington, Arkansas, Texas and Missouri held down spots 5-10. Three other Pac-12 universities were voted in the Top 25: No. 15 Arizona, No. 16 Oregon and No. 21 Arizona State.
The Bruins are scheduled to face four top 10 teams, including No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 6 Florida State, No. 7 Washington and No. 9 Texas, and nine of the preseason Top 25 during the 2022 season.
Coming off a 47-7 (19-2 Pac-12) record in 2021, a No. 5 final ranking in the USA Today/NFCA poll and a sixth-straight appearance at the Women's College World Series, UCLA is returning a veteran team featuring 10 players who appeared in at least 40 games and 17 total letter winners who accounted for 63% of its hits and 82% of its runs.
The Bruins have also added six newcomers, including freshman utility Savannah Pola who was slotted as one of D1Softball's Top 75 impact freshman and left-handed grad transfer pitcher Lauren Shaw from Iowa who posted a career 2.26 earned run average over three seasons as a Hawkeye.
Among UCLA's returners are National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Americans Aaliyah Jordan, Megan Faraimo and Maya Brady on the First Team as well as Briana Perez on the Third Team.